Maryland is continuing its push into the forefront of mixed martial arts on the national stage. Previously, I had written about a fighter from Evolve Academy making the cut for the latest season of "The Ultimate Fighter". Now, another Maryland MMA gym is muscling its way into the spotlight.
Team Lloyd Irvin of Camp Springs, which is known for churning out talent that has competed in the UFC and other organizations, has one of its fighters in one of its highest profile-bouts to date. "Mr. Wonderful" Phil Davis - who trains at the gym, according to a recent Lloyd Irvin e-newsletter - is in the main event tonight on "UFC Fight Night", facing Antonio Rogerio Nogueira, better known as the twin brother of Antonio Rodrigo "Minotauro" Nogueira.
Many are starting to compare Davis to Jon "Bones" Jones, who, if you saw UFC 128 last weekend like I did, absolutely DESTROYED Mauricio "Shogun" Rua and won the UFC Light Heavyweight Title, all at the tender age of 23. It's definitely too early to tell if Davis is another Jones in the making. Jones appears to be a once-in-a-lifetime phenom who has completely dominated his division so far. It remains to be seen if Davis can measure up and overcome the same type of competition Jones has, and tonight's fight against "Lil' Nog" will be a good place to start.
But speaking of big events, Shogun Fights 4 is scheduled to take place next month in Baltimore. The card for the event is still taking shape, but looking at some of the planned bouts already listed on the site, it looks like another entertaining show is on the horizon.